A Tipp City restaurant that has operated under the same name for nearly three decades will shut its doors on the final day of 2017, according to its owner.
But there’s a chance the restaurant could reopen under the same name and new ownership sometime early next year.
The Tipp o’ the Town Family Restaurant has been a community mainstay for more than 29 years at 1150 W. Main St. at I-75. But its owner, Paul Loubier, is retiring, and the restaurant is scheduled to close its doors at 3 p.m. on Dec. 31.
“I’m 66, and running a restaurant is very time-consuming,” Loubier said. “It’s time for me to move on.”
It’s unclear what will happen to the restaurant. At this point, there are two potential scenarios.
The company that owns the Taco Bell on the east side of the I-75-Ohio 571 interchange near Tipp o’ the Town has the equivalent of first dibs on the property, an option to purchase that extends through the next few weeks, Loubier said. If no deal is finalized during that time frame, Loubier said a second, unidentified potential buyer is interested in purchasing the property, and has indicated to Loubier that the restaurant would likely reopen as Tipp o’ the Town.
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The building has housed a restaurant since the mid-1960s, when an Aunt Jemimah’s Pancake House opened there, and it has had stints as Calico Kitchen, Ye Old Family Inn and Cindy’s, Loubier said. When he opened Tipp o’ the Town in the fall of 1988, the space had been empty for more than a year.
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The restaurant endured some lean years, especially during the 2006-08 recession, but Loubier said sales have been growing at a steady pace each of the last three years, and are up 5 percent so far this year.
“It’s a very successful restaurant,” he said. “We have some very, very loyal customers.”
The restaurant has served four generations of some families over its 29-year span, Loubier said.
Tipp o’ the Town’s closure will impact 20 to 25 employees.